"I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library." ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

"Why did they accuse people in the first place if they had no real evidence?"

The fifth graders are beginning a unit on Colonial America. This is a collaborative unit with the classroom. We teacher librarians have embedded our student and professional learning goals in this unit. Our main goal is focused on inquiry, specifically: helping students understand what a good researchable question looks like; helping students understand the difference between thick and thin questions; and, giving students opportunities to practice creating questions and answering them.
Our goals also involve having the students become more facile with accessing content in eBooks. You can see the results from that assessment below. During the eBook exploration, the students were asked to read the pages about the Salem Witch Trials and craft one question. I am impressed by their questions. Next week, we'll be crafting questions using the See.Think.Wonder method. The week after that we'll be taking those questions as well as the ones below and sorting them into thick and thin categories. These questions will also be included in their unit of study bringing a level of authenticity to the unit!

"Out of all of the English colonies, which one's had freedom, and whose fault was it that Salem didn't have freedom?"
"What tests would they do to people to see if they were witches or not?"
"Why would you want to hang people just because of assumption?"
"How fair were the trials for the accused?"
"Why did people accuse each other of being witches?"
"Why did people think that they were witches?"
"Why would they accuse people of witchcraft?"
"my question: why did they hang them/ killed them instead of asking them them about witchcraft (if they believed in witches it would be really awesome if they had a village witch that helps people)"
"What things would people do that would make people think they were witches?"
"What is "the bloody march""
"Why did they accuse people in the first place if they had no real evidence?"
"Why did they call it the Salem which trials?"
"What happen to the 24 guilty people?"
"How did the group in M.A put a stop to the trials."
"Why did the Salem Witch Trials start in Salem?"
"Why did the accusations of witches start in Salem?"
"Why did they accuse people of being witches if they didn't have any evidence?"
"Why were people accused of witch craft?"
"Why would people think it was witchcraft?"
"What would be considered witchcraft?"
"What were the names of the people who stopped the trials."
"How did they choose what people where "witches?"
"I am wondering what is so bad with witchcraft?"
"What evidence did the Salem people have that the people were using witchcraft? What did they do?"
"Who thought they were witches?"
"Why did they accuse people of things they had no prove of it?"
"Why on earth did thy do it?"
"How did they know people where practicing Witchcraft?"
"Why was Mary Walcott accused of being a witch?"
"Why did they think people were witches?"
"What made somebody suspect that someone was involved with witchcraft?"
"Who were the others they did not give freedom to?"
"Why were the women accused for witchcraft?"
"Why is witch craft so bad and outlawed, what is so bad about it?"
"Why were people proven guilty even though witchcraft isn't real?"
"Why would people suddenly accuse someone else of being a witch?"
"Why didn't the Massachusetts leaders put a stop to it when the problem started?"
Why was Mary Walcott accused of being a "witch"?
"I do not have a question sorry!"

It's interesting to note the themes in the questions... 

This week was all about finding the eBook in the Destiny catalog, launching it, and then being able to navigate through it while using the tools. 

Here are their responses:

This question was out-of-date, as all three were now correct.

The students demonstrated their understanding by using the glossary to find the meaning of the word colonize. They wrote the definition from the glossary:  "Colonize: to move into a new place and take over the land"

The students demonstrated their understanding by using the index to find information about the Salem Witch Trials. They wrote down the pages: "Pages 12 and 13 will tell you about the Salem Witch Trials."

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